Thursday, September 16, 2010

Basic Meatloaf

Basic Meatloaf made with lean ground beef, finely minced onion, green onion, celery, and green pepper, and shown here with a Brown Gravy.

Basic Meatloaf

Don't believe for a minute that you cannot get a nice, moist meatloaf without using a high fat ground beef like ground chuck. I love ground chuck and use it exclusively in burgers for the best flavor, or in recipes where I can drain off the excess fat. Is it tasty and delicious? Yes! But, let's face it.

Ground chuck is also a very high fat beef and really not ideal for a baked meatloaf, unless you don't mind all the accumulated fat the meat swims in during cooking. Plus, all that grease makes it more messy to deal with and your meatloaf will be so saturated in fat, it will likely crumble.

This recipe uses a leaner ground sirloin, but with the addition of vegetables - onion, celery, bell pepper and mushrooms - not only adding great flavor, but also keeping the meat nice and moist, not at all dry and not drenched with all that fat. It's a delicious basic meatloaf recipe - nice and moist and plenty flavorful. The key here is including vegetables, either minced with a food processor or finely minced by hand- and your kids won't even know that they are in there.

As far as glazes go, I prefer the classic and simple ketchup, mustard, and brown sugar glaze with my meatloaf as shown in the picture below - I just happen to like the tangy contrast personally - my husband prefers it with a homemade gravy, as pictured above because he likes the gravy with the typical side dish mashed potatoes. I also have used my Rotel sauce that is just delicious with this meatloaf that you might like to try. Serve your meatloaf with some Homemade Mashed Potatoes and a green veggie like steamed broccoli, southern green beans or a nice mixed garden salad.

It's a great basic meatloaf and I hope you enjoy it! Here's how to make it.

Recipe: Basic Meatloaf

©From the Kitchen of Deep South Dish
Prep time: 15 min |Cook time: 2 hours | Yield: About 4 to 6 servings

  • 2-1/4 pounds of ground sirloin
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 medium sweet or yellow onion, minced
  • 3 green onions, minced
  • 1 stalk celery, minced
  • 1/2 of a green bell pepper, minced
  • 4 slices of white or whole wheat bread, torn in chunks and ground
  • 1/2 cup of mushrooms, minced
  • 1 cup chicken broth or stock
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon of Cajun seasoning (like Slap Ya Mama), or to taste
  • Hot sauce, to taste
For the Glaze:
  • 1/2 cup of ketchup
  • 1 teaspoon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar

Put ground beef in a large mixing bowl. Add in the remaining ingredients, mix gently and place into a large 10 x 5 loaf pan, pressing mixture in lightly. Place meatloaf pan on top rack in oven and place an aluminum covered baking pan on the rack underneath to catch any overflow drippings.

Bake at 350 degrees F for 1 hour 30 minutes to 2 hours or until internal temperature reaches 160 degrees. If extra time is needed, you may tent with aluminum foil to prevent burning and continue baking until done. For glaze, combine the ketchup, mustard and brown sugar and stir well. Brush glaze across the top of meatloaf the last 10 minutes of cooking. Alternatively, serve the meatloaf with a brown gravy instead of glazing.

Allow to rest 5 minutes before slicing. Serve with rice, or Homemade Mashed Potatoes and a green veggie or salad.

Cook's Notes: Shape into two smaller loaves if desired, and check temperature at the earlier time. I use a food processor to mince all of the vegetables. Pulse garlic cloves first, cut the onion, green onion, celery, and green pepper into chunks and add to the garlic, processing about 10 seconds. Add the vegetables to the ground beef and then process the bread and mushrooms together about 10 seconds and add to ground beef.

Use a leaner ground beef like sirloin as noted in the recipe, rather than a higher fat beef, like chuck. The minced vegetables provide plenty of moisture to make for a very tender and juicy meatloaf, and any higher fat beef will likely not hold together well. May also use a mix of ground beef and sweet Italian sausage, or a product sold as "meatloaf mix" which typically is equal parts of ground beef, veal and pork.


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©Deep South Dish
Adapted from the Food Processor Bible
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Posted by on September 16, 2010

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  1. I love myself a good meatloaf! I can see why you brought this back for a repeat, it looks delicious!

  2. This looks like much more than an everyday basic meatloaf!!

  3. I love meatloaf. Hubby makes a good one, so I leave that meal to him! This sounds good, too!

  4. nothing like an oldy but goody!! thanks, mary


  5. The rotel sauce sounds wonderful. I always put some horseradish in to my meatloaf mix.

  6. Meatloaf weather, we finally have meatloaf weather! When I make mine I use a comibination mix, beef,veal & pork. That is how my mom made it. I have never made it any other way..Yours looks delish, and I'll give it a try....

  7. Meatloaf means having meatloaf sandwiches the next day, my favorite!

    What is that? No you aren't hearing someone in your fridge. Just go back to what you were doing and nevermind those noises in the kitchen.

  8. Your meatloaf looks outstanding . . . i've got to try your recipe! thanks Mary, Roz

  9. I made this a few months back when I was craving meatloaf. It was and continues to be my favorite recipe. Word to the wise though, don't attempt to 'kick it up a notch' in heat. It's perfect JUST the way it's written. ;-) I did and still do add the tomato gravy from the other recipe though. YUM YUM YUM!!

  10. We LOVE this meatloaf! Now that our sons are out of the house, it's too much for us to finish. I'm wondering if leftovers freeze well?

    1. Wrap it tightly in heavy foil a couple of times, then put in a freezer bag & try to use it in a couple of months. Stick the wrapped meatloaf in a shallow pan and heat it up wrapped so it retains the moisture - 350 about an hour. Better if you can allow thaw time in the fridge, or you may need to add some extra time for cooking if you cook from frozen. If you use fresh ground beef, meaning not previously frozen, you can also make the mix and divide it, freezing half raw for baking fresh. Hope that helps!!

  11. Thank you! It does! I'll be doing that today. :)

  12. Hi Mary, made your meatloaf for Sunday dinner. It tastes fantastic. Even the leftovers we had the next day was still moist and tasty, and hubby doesn't really care for any meatloaf recipes I make, because, until now, I could not find a recipe that was good enough. Thank you for another good recipe. I love checking out all your recipes!!!!


    1. Hi Catherine & thank you so much!! I'm so glad to hear that the hubby enjoyed this one - that's always a good sign to me! I really do love this meatloaf - those ground up veggies do make a difference if you ask me. Thanks again for the sweet note - I really appreciate you taking the time to come back by and leave a review!

  13. Meatloaf....My Favorite Comfort Food that my Mother made!! One year for Christmas my brother and I ask for it instead of turkey. Loving us like she did...we got both!! Pinning this!!

    1. I love it!! Moms are great aren't they?

    2. Yes they are! I sure miss mine! She died 1 year ago this month.

    3. Oh my goodness, I'm so sorry for your loss Kim. I've lost both my parents now - cancer - but Moms are the hardest. My Mama has been gone now 17 years & mercy I still miss her every day of my life. HUGS!!


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